Cleaning House – A Short Story

“So, what are you planning for New Years?” Margori smiled then took a sip from her red soda can. The first flakes of snow fall were peppering her dark curly hair and the shoulders of her long black wool coat.

There was a chill to the night air that Camille was aware of but couldn’t really feel on her flesh. She smiled at Margori from over her shoulder, then turned to look off the rooftop at the brightly colored city lights below. At one point in time, those lights held an alluring intoxication, but now, they were just dull bulbs illuminating a filthy zoo.

“I don’t know.” she finally answered. “Probably kill myself.”

“What?” Margori coughed on her drink, then frowned. “What do you mean?”

Camille gave a tight lipped smile and shrugged, then turned to face Margori and leaned back against the roof’s short wall. “I mean, why are we here, Margori? What are we doing? What’s the point?”

“Again, what do you mean?” Margori gave her a half sneering half confused look. “What the hell are you talking about?”

“Aren’t you tired of living like this?” Camille knew her friend wasn’t, but she asked anyway. It just seemed like the right thing to do. The polite thing to do before she murdered her.

Margori tossed her soda can aside causing the chilled blood inside to splash out as the metallic container clattered on the cracked and uneven roof top floor. A peculiar habit she picked up from Camille’s brother, drinking chilled blood. Her jaw muscles tightened and she almost snarled.”You’re starting to piss me off, Camille!” She took a deep breath. “What the fuck are you talking about?”

“Nothing.” Camille shook her head. She considered the other women for a moment, then held out her arms. “Com’ere.”

Margori eyed her suspiciously then took a hesitant step forward almost as if compelled. “But, why? I don’t understand all this.” she took another hesitant step like a child reluctantly going to displeased parent.

Camille smiled sweetly, regretfully. “I just want to hug you.” she gestured her closer. If she was going to leave this world, she felt she had to take her creations with her. Do something to lessen the stain she’d leave on the earth.

Margori finally came. She wrapped her arms around Camille’s waist and, the shorter of the two women, laid her head on Camille’s bosom like a daughter. “You’re acting really fucking weird tonight.” she breathed. Her body relaxed in Camille’s arms. It felt like home. It was home.

Camille held her tight, and softly stroked her short curly hair with one hand. “I know. I know.” she cooed with a nod. She remembered when she turned Margori, over a hundred years ago, in an embrace much like this one. She was so naive then, same as she was now apparently. Camille taught her so many things. How to control her urges, how to hunt and stalk prey, and how to drink just enough not to kill her victims.

Margori had became a terror over the century, worse than Camille ever was to a degree. She liked playing with the humans a little too much, liked making them suffer a little too long, and like making them scream a little to loud. She was a young predator of Camille’s own making and though not pushed from her own womb, Margori was her child all the same.

Camille fought back tears but they rimmed her eyes defiantly. “I’m just going to miss you so much.”

“See?” Margori jerked back and looked up at Camille with fear and confusion in her eyes. “That’s what the fuck I’m talking about. What is this? Why are talking like that?” she tried to push away, but Camille’s superior strength was unyielding. “Let me go, Camille! Let me go!” she struggled, prey snared in a trap.

With the hand she used to stroke Magori, Camille grabbed a fist full of the women’s curly hair and yanked her head back exposing bare neck. Camille opened her mouth impossibly wide, like a snake unhinging it’s jaw. Pearl white teeth grew to long sharp fangs, and with a bite like a steel trap, she tore into Magori’s throat.

Margori convulsed and gurgled, her screams muffled by Camille’s crushing bite. She pulled and yanked on Camille’s tan coat until her throat was ripped out. Her mouth worked soundlessly in shock, and Camille dug in a second bite and tore away more flesh and bone that left Margori’s head to tumble to the floor, gaze frozen and blank.

Margori’s headless body crumbled in a heap and Camille fell to her knees before it weeping with her mouth, now back to it’s normal shape, smeared with blood.

She turned away from her gruesome work, unable to stomach the beauty she destroyed. Dread came over her with the taunting thought that she would have to kill her own brother next.

A muffled sound sprang forth from Magori’s body. It was music, a ring tone from the cellphone stuffed within the pockets of her black wool coat.

Camille listened to it for a moment. It was loud and boisterous, full of energy, just like Margori was…used to be. She got to her feet and looked down at all the blood covering the front of her clothes. She’d have to change. Luckily her loft was on the floor just below. She owned the whole building.

Margori’s phone went silent, barely missed amongst the sounds of the surrounding city. Then suddenly, Camille’s phone went off. A soft and mellow ring tone, layered with subtle emotion. It was reserved for only one person. Her brother, Commodore. Their parents seemed to have high hopes for him given the name, but without her, he was nothing. He’d already be dead. He was about to be dead.

She answered the phone. “Brother.” her tone was more emotionless than she wanted it to be. She was beginning to feel numb, over Margori’s death, no doubt. She hadn’t felt this way since her first two or three kills so long ago.

“Hey,” Commodore yelled through the phone. There seemed to be a party raging wherever he was. “Are you with Margori? I just tried to call her, but she didn’t pick up.”

“Yes, she’s here.” Camille eyed the lifeless body. “But, can you come over. I need to see you.”

“Why?” concern laced his voice. “What’s wrong? Is it the Hunters?”

“No.” She shook her head. “It’s something worse than them.We have to talk. Now.”

He seemed to hesitate over the phone. “Okay. I’m on my way.”

“See you when you get here.” She hung up.

Something worse than the Hunters? Yes, she thought she was. Not even the Hunters killed their own kind, but she just did, and she was about to do it again. Kill her own brother even. Her real brother from their real Human parents.

It had to be done and she had to do it. She was never one to not take responsibility for her own messes. Margori and Commodore were just the beginning though. The two closest to her. The hardest two to put down. The hardest two to put down emotionally. She sired only a few of her kind throughout the centuries and each one of her making had to die in order for her to set things right.

After Commodore was gone, the rest would be that much easier to kill. She had a short list to go down, but it was a list nonetheless, and fortunately for her, she literally had nothing but time to kill.

This story came to me while at work and I wrote it over a lunch break. Just a random bit that I free-styled on the fly.

Camille has become a very interesting character to me. Her goal and motives, very intriguing.

I may entertain the confrontation between her and her brother, Commodore, to see how that turns out. Will she be successful? I don’t know and I don’t really want to think about it ahead of time. I want to be surprised by whatever flows from my fingertips in the moment of writing. So, we’ll see.


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